Back in 2016 when NVIDIA launched the Pascal GP100 GPU and associated Tesla cards, one of the consequences of their increased server focus for Pascal was that interconnect bandwidth and latency became an issue. Having long relied on PCI Express, NVIDIA’s goals for their platform began outpacing what PCIe could provide in terms of raw bandwidth, never mind ancillary issues like latency and cache coherency. As a result, for their compute focused GPUs, NVIDIA introduced a new interconnect, NVLink. With 4 (and later 6) NVLinks per GPU, these links could be teamed together for greater bandwidth between individual GPUs, or lesser bandwidth but still direct connections to a greater number of GPUs. In practice this limited the size of a single NVLink cluster to 8...

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